DEFINITIONS:

The Populism Propensity Score (PPS) is derived from the following questions:

I. Four standard child rearing value questions which have been used on social science surveys in the United States since 1992 to estimate an individual’s disposition to authoritarianism. These questions are presented on ESRP/ASRP surveys as follows:

Although there are a number of qualities that people feel children should have, every person thanks that some qualities are more important than others. Below are pairs of desirable qualities. For each pair please indicate which quality you think is more important for a child to have…

  • Independence or Respect for Elders?
  • Good Manners or Curiosity?
  • Self-Reliance or Obedience?
  • Being Considerate or Being Well Behaved?

Both is not allowed as an answer option. [Some research indicates that including both as an answer makes the scale generated from these questions cross-racially invalid in the United States.]

The “authoritarian” answers to these questions are Respect for Elders, Good Manners, Obedience, and Being Well Behaved. People who answer the four questions pairs this way have the highest authoritarian score.

II. A question pair from the Social Dominance Orientation question battery is added to the child rearing values questions to form the PPS. These questions are presented on the ESRP/ASRP surveys as follows:

Here is a list of some ideas that different people have to make society better. You may favor some ideas and oppose others. For each idea, I want you to tell me how strongly you oppose or favor the idea…

  • An ideal society requires some groups to be on the top and others to be on the bottom
  • Some groups of people are simply inferior to other groups

The answer scale includes seven points that range from “Strongly oppose” to “Strongly favor.”

Answers to the child rearing/authoritarian and SDO questions are combined to form the Populism Propensity Score. On VOXPOPULISM, PPS is simplified and presented as a five-point scale ranging from 0 to 1 in which 1 represents the highest PPS score.

Standard Survey Measures of Populism (SSMP) used in ESRP/ASRP surveys are estimated from the following questions.

Germany:

SSMP is estimated based on answers to the following questions:

Do you agree or disagree (five-point scale ranging from “Strongly agree” to “Strongly disagree”) with the following statements…

  • The members of parliament (or country relevant term) need to follow the will of the people.
  • The people should have the final say on the most important political issues by voting on them directly in referendums.
  • The people should be consulted whenever important decisions are taken.
  • The differences between the people and the elites are much greater than the differences between ordinary people.
  • Members of parliament (or country relevant term) very quickly lose touch with ordinary people.
  • Politicians talk too much and take too little action.
  • Ordinary people are of good and honest character.
  • Ordinary people pull together.
  • Ordinary people share the same values and interests.

France:

SSMP is estimated based on answers to the following questions:

Do you agree or disagree (four-point scale ranging from “Strongly agree” to “Strongly disagree”) with the following statements…

  • Elites and experts in this country do not understand the lives of people like me.
  • France’s political and economic leaders have lost the sense of the people.

(Other questions probing populism were not included in the French SSMP because their inclusion lowered the scale’s reliability.)

The Netherlands:

SSMP is estimated based on answers to the following questions:

Do you agree or disagree (four-point scale ranging from “Strongly agree” to “Strongly disagree”) with the following statements…

  • Elites and experts in this country do not understand the lives of people like me.
  • Globalization has mostly benefited the wealthy rather than ordinary citizens 

(Other questions probing populism were not included in the Dutch SSMP because their inclusion lowered the scale’s reliability.)